The other morning, I saw a video on instagram of someone skate boarding on the Champs Elysees in Paris, and started crying. It hit me that last year at this time, I thought I was never going to be able to leave the country ever again.
I’d just fled the city like a refugee. I never would have moved out of the city, especially single, if not under those circumstances. But I was in self preservation mode. I was in a very prolonged fight or flight. I was coping with what the world seemed to be shifting into. And I’d come to accept, on some level, that the world was forever changed, and it seemed like unvaccinated people were now second class citizens. I thought maybe this would be permanent.
After having a many-year period where things were going very well, and seeing the world in a rather charmed way, all of a sudden, the world was a sinister place. It felt like I was living in a dystopian movie, where the majority of people couldn’t see what was going on.
Last winter, unvaccinated people were not allowed indoors in the city. They were being fired from their jobs. Denied organ transplants (and in many places, still are.) Last year, I genuinely wondered how far this was going to go. Were the super intense conspiracy theorist right after all? Were we really being pushed out of society? Were the quarantine FEMA camps coming? Was this the beginning of the digital ID social credit system? It honestly looked that way for a solid half year, at least.
Clearly, that intensity and extreme horrible treatment of unvaccinated people has softened a lot in just a year, but the deeper change still may very well be permanent. I’m a lot calmer now, but I have a new wariness in my fellow man. A terror at what I saw people willing to do to each other, so quickly, based on the manipulation of their own fear, and based such flimsy and illogical evidence.
I am still reeling from the whiplash of it all. I can’t shake off my city neighbor, not knowing my own vaccination status, telling me very plainly that people who aren’t vaccinated shouldn’t be able to buy food. My city dentist telling me I could no longer be a patient. A doctor friend of my mother having her religious exemption denied and being fired from her decades-long hospital position. Even after the vaccine mandates were lifted, and it was clear the vaccine didn’t stop transmission, the cafe I started going to in the suburbs started only letting you stay if you showed proof of vaccination. And now, all of a sudden… most people are acting like it never happened. It’s like it was a bad dream. But… it was very very real.
Many people are now seeing the state of confusion and fear they were put into. Many people are now seeing that it was all overblown, and that the government coercion was strange… and wrong. But many people still don’t. They’ll read this and think: wow, too bad she became such a brainwashed extremist. This fall, Pfizer’s Janine Small said to the EU Parliament, that they didn’t even test for transmission because they had to move “at the speed of science,” whatever that means — and people still won’t see. They won’t budge.
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I was afraid of COVID for a few weeks. I was cautious in the very beginning. But, at a certain point it was clear to me that none of this made sense, and that people were losing their ability to rationally think. This was not the approach to health that made any sense to me, especially based on my own difficult journey with health. In my road to freedom from food and weight obsession, I finally understood the lies and corruption in medicine and big business and government agencies. I wrote about it in The F*ck It Diet. I understood that health, whether it be the way we eat, or the way we live, is a holistic thing. Not only full body, but body, mind, and spirit. Health is not an isolated thing. And we cannot be isolated into health. We cannot be terrified into health. We cannot tense our way into health. We cannot sanitize our way into health.
I knew… this approach was going to be terrible for us in the end. And, knowing what I knew about big pharma, I saw from near beginning… uh oh, here we go, into a world that is becoming even more psychotic about, and beholden to, Big Pharma. Knowing what I knew about the systematic removal of vaccine exemptions from state to state, I knew… this is going to become a vaccine mandate. I felt it in my bones.
Interestingly, I already did not trust Big Pharma, but I did semi-trust “The Government” and “The Media.” I was liberal. And because of the circle I was in on social media, I saw everything through a more and more what-they-call-“woke” social justice lens. And I believed (nearly) everything I was told. I trusted (liberal) authority for the most part (except Big Pharma). I loved who I was told to love. I hated what and who I was told to hate. And that was that.
COVID broke that for me, because I started to see the news lying. And the government lying. I heard them making no sense. I saw them contradicting themselves and not admitting it. I saw them censoring scientists and doctors who risked everything to speak out against the official government narrative. I saw the world governments all step in line with the same narrative in a way that some saw as “proof” of how legitimate it was. But I saw it as odd and eery control, because I knew they were lying. I knew what they were saying and doing made no logical, scientific sense.
I saw liberals flip from “I will never get Trump’s vaccine” to “if you don’t take this (Trump’s) vaccine, which has barely been tested but is definitely 95-100% effective at stopping transmission, you are a murderer and will be fired and maybe should be thrown in jail” to “oh it doesn’t stop transmission but we never said it does but still get it or be fired” to a more recent: “oh let’s all just forgive each other for what we did during the pandemic but the vaccine is totally wonderful and important and required even though it stops working after 4 weeks and might kill some people and give kids heart problems but it’s all about the greater good.”
Plainly, I saw the world lose its mind.
I knew that the vaccine didn’t stop transmission from the beginning. I have been listening to the censored scientists and doctors. I listened to two scientists warn of something called “antibody dependent enhancement,” something that would actually encourage the virus to mutate in the bodies of the vaccinated (which is what happened, but got blamed on the unvaccinated). I heard warnings about what the mRNA tech would do longterm (guesses, worries, and lots of “we simply do not know, because we simply have never used this kind of tech, in this way, in humans before.”) So I did not get the vaccine, and had no intention of getting it. And I’m still very glad I didn’t, despite the terror and ostracization of the past year and a half.
I was also hearing stories from lots of people who were disabled from the vaccine. Or who developed a life altering heart conditions. In fact, I just posted a “what made you a conspiracy theorist” question box on instagram, and among the answers were things like: “I developed 13 tumors on my liver from the vaccine.” “I was forced to get it and I’m extremely ill now.” “I thought I had MS from the vaccine.”
I don’t know anyone personally who became permanently disabled from the vaccine, thought I do know someone who was disabled from the vaccine for a few months* with face and arm paralysis. It only got better when I gave her my (secret backup store of) ivermectin, because I had heard research on how it works on the spike proteins from the vaccine, and was given as an intervention to people who developed disabling tremors from the vaccine. (*Edited to add that I’ve learned that she actually still has lingering neurological effects over a year later.)
Anyway, my point is: I’m not trying to say that tons of people are disabled from the vaccine. I don’t know the rate. I’m not sure that anyone does, because they sure aren’t keeping very good track. And I don’t know what the complications will look like longterm. I just knew, that based on it: A, not working to stop transmission. B, hurting enough people. And C, for good measure, being morally opposed to medical coercion, I was never going to get it.
The other terror-inducing experience, was the fallout of being an author with an audience who turned on me during all of this. I was a semi-public figure. And thankfully, only semi public.
My job was to write about what I thought. My job as a writer, up until then, had been questioning the way things are. Critiquing the status quo. And all of a sudden, I was not allowed to do that anymore without dire consequences, and accusations of racism and killing people. Literally — there was a chunk of time when questioning covid measures made you racist. Still, some people go there.
So I didn’t question anything publicly for a while, while I tried to get my bearings. And when I eventually started speaking up on the mandates and cancel culture, over a year in, (I was starting very reasonably, I thought), there was a huge fall from grace. Accusations of racism by omission, and being “dangerous,” and losing my mind. Arguments over whether people should share my book as a resource anymore. Prior colleagues removing my interviews from their podcasts, doing anything they could to distance themselves from me.
In speaking out, I essentially gave up the career trajectory of the next book deal. What would it have been? Something trendy like, We’re F*cked Up: How to be a good ally in a post-pandemic world.
Not that I can’t publish a book again. Not that I can’t self-publish if no publisher will have me. Not that I know what is going to happen, big picture. But what I do know, is that the whole thing I’d built and been working towards crumbled. Even just my lack of clarity on wtf was going on in the world has made it difficult to even know “what I write about."
Who can write when they are confused AND no matter what they say they get accused of the most horrible things imaginable? When criticizing illogical masking rules gets you accused of both murder and racism?
Actually, after opening up the conspiracy question box on instagram the other night night, I had a dream that I got an email from my agent saying: Just saw your posts. This is not a good idea. We are not going to be able to sell a book again.
Before posting last night, I resigned myself (yet again) to the likelihood of these being nails in the coffin of my previous career. If you’ve read my substack for a while, you probably notice… I keep harping on this. I know. I’ll eventually stop. I hope. But the reason is because I’m still grappling with it all. My point, every time I bring this up again is… Everything fell apart. And I’m still reeling, I’m still mourning, and I’m still nervous about it.
I’m nervous and I know there’s something better, waiting. There has to be. Last year’s terror gave way to this year’s depression. Last year was constant fight or flight. Constant worry. Constant research and panic. But at least there was the constant barrage of stress hormones, giving me some sort of focus, albeit terrible (and terrible for me). At least there was the focus of getting out of the city, selling my house, buying a new one. At least there was: ok maybe I can change things up and figure things out. Now, I’m just… depleted, confused, wiped out, and wondering wtf just happened.
But still, through my depression, I know there has to be something better. Something else coming. I have no idea what it is. But now that in a new rebooted relationship with God, I’m currently in the process of surrendering even more. I’m saying, I don’t know what you want me to do, but whatever it is, I’ll do it. If it’s a totally new career, I’ll do it. If it’s continuing writing, I’ll do it. If it’s both, I’ll do it. If it’s the podcast, I’ll do it. Please don’t make me become a nun, but whatever else it is, I will do.
I’ll either eventually start a new career off of the internet. No idea what it would be, so I’m waiting. Or I’ll keep writing. Or I’ll be a problematic podcaster. Or all three. Or, better yet, I’ll meet my husband next month, get married this year, get pregnant, and become a stay at home mom. And I can be happily barefoot in the kitchen, because as I said in my last post, my feet do not fit in most shoes these days.
(This paywall puts the audio behind the paywall.)